Record Day At Winton

Bruce Stewart

The weather and track were sensational at Central Southland Raceway at Winton today, and records tumbled as a result.

Robyns Playboy started the run when he bettered the long standing three year old track record of 2-54.5 held since 2007 by Rider On The Storm. His new record time is 2-54.4.

The gelding already holds the Southland record of 2-53.0 which he posted at Wyndham last month.

From gate eight Robyns Playboy was caught wide early before driver Craig Ferguson had little option but to go forward and take the lead.

ďHe worked bloody hard early. He was out three wide. They went to the mile in 55 (seconds). Then he was able to back it off. Craig said he was really settled today and he tried to get in but couldnít so he just had to keep going. He said he was still going good at the finish,Ē said owner and trainer Ross Wilson.



Chris Wilson leads Robyns Playboy back with driver Craig Ferguson and trainer Ross Wilson - Photo Bruce Stewart. 


Early in his career Wilson said Robyns Playboy didnít switch onto the racing game but now itís a totally different story.

ďAt home heís starting to get too keen. I havenít hoppled him since Monday because he went that fast on Monday. Iíve just cantered him behind the jogging machine. Thatís why heís going to the races because heís tearing around being an idiot.Ē

Understandably there has been plenty of interest from buyers to purchase the talented three year old but Wilson says heís not on the market.

ďI tell them pretty quick thatís heís not for sale. People say 'you donít want to hear my offer' and I say 'No.' I always remember turning down $250,000 for Robynís Cullen when he was a two year old. Itís not about the money itís just about having fun with a horse.Ē

So with two track records in the space of four weeks Wilson says his next target is the Cardrona Distillery/MLT Three Year Old Stakes on his home course on the 27th December. After that there are some good stakes races on the horizon.

ďHeís the best horse Iíve ever had and you only get one chance with a race like the Derby. Weíll look at the Super Nugget Final, The Supremacy and after that I definitely want to have a go at the Derby.Ē

Regular driver Craig Ferguson says Robynís Playboy is the best horse heís driven.

ďAlthough we went a three year old record today I tried to look after him. If Iíd let him go at the 600 he would have won a lot more convincingly. Heís got a good high cruising speed,Ē he said.

The winning margin for Robyns Playboy in the John Keenan Memorial was a length and a quarter from Raffy Roo.

A race later four year old trotter Majestic Man continued his rich vein of form when he narrowly won the main trot of the day.

The four year old son of Majestic Son galloped at the start and settled third last with only Super Fast Pat and Rebel Kibbybones behind him. At the 800 metres driver Brad Williamson hopped onto the back of an improving War Admiral. Halfway up the straight War Admiral had mastered pacemaker Grace OíMalley with Majestic Man starting to make his run down the middle of the track. He just mastered a game War Admiral by a nose.

His winning time of 3-01.0 was a new track record bettering the previous record of 3-02.5 recorded by Sundons Wish last season.

Majestic Man is raced by the Griffins Syndicate and it was some compensation for the group after their class trotting mare Dark Horse had to be turned out again after picking up another injury.



Majestic Man (4) and Brad Williamson just beating War Admiral - Photo Bruce Stewart.




The Phil Williamson trained trotter coming back to the birdcage - Photo Bruce Stewart.




Members of the Griffins Syndicate - Photo Bruce Stewart 


Another large syndicate horse Please Shuddup won the next race and his time for the 2400 metre mobile was also a new track record.

The Auckland Reactor four year old was tucked away nicely on the running line by reinsman Matty Williamson as Canterbury visitor Pats Dragon set a hot pace.

Smokin By and Cast No Shadow both had turns in front up the straight but Williamson used the passing lane to perfection to get up and win by three quarters of a length from Smokin By with a nose back to third place getter Cast No Shadow.

The winning time of 2-53.3 was a new track record for entires and geldings for the 2400 metre mobile.

The previous record of 2-54.0 was set in 2017 by Jimmy Mack.


Please Shuddup trained by Murray Brown and driven by Matty Williamson beating his brother Nathan on Smokin By - Photo Bruce Stewart.




Coming back to the birdcage and a bit of a chat - Photo Bruce Stewart.




The big group of owners from Tricode Syndicate, Tricode Racing Syndicate No 2, and Dolce Syndicate - Photo Bruce Stewart.



Post race pats and chats - Photo Bruce Stewart.



Goodbyes -Photo Bruce Stewart



Meanwhile two relatively new trainers posted quinellas in back to back races at Winton.



Gore trainer Ricky Gutsell trained Vintage Rose and Maahes to quinella Race One whilst a race later Oamaru trainer Brad Williamson scored a quinella with his two runners Thatís The Story and Zoned Scarlett. Gutsell is in his third season of training and this was the first time heís managed the feat while Williamson who is in his second season as a trainer quinellaed a race once before at Invercargill in February.



Vintage Rose winning by seven and three quarter lengths for trainer Ricky Gutsell and driver Kirstin Barclay - Photo Bruce Stewart.




That's The Story (1) beating stable mate Zoned Scarlett (widest runner) - Photo Bruce Stewart


Other winners today included Zinny Mach who won by an impressive four lengths and Fear Cruisin which won by a length and a half for trainer Peter Robertson of Templeton. Runner up to Fear Cruisin, Betstars Blue Jean was a game second after pulling a peeled tyre.



Impressive three year old winner for trainer Mitchell Kerr and driver Nathan Williamson - Photo Bruce Stewart.




Fear Cruisin winning for trainer Peter Robertson and driver Jonny Cox - Photo Bruce Stewart. 




Betstars Blue Jean's flatty - Photo Bruce Stewart


In the last race of the day the Greg and Nina Hope trained and Ben Hope driven Mossdale Art added to her breeding potential when she won her 1609 metre mobile event in a smart 1-52.5. Sheís owned by Mossdale breeder Archie Affleck and won by the biggest margin of the day Ė eight lengths.



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